HoopsHype Sam Presti rumors

July 5, 2014 Updates

The Oklahoma City Thunder has named Darko Rajakovic as assistant coach, it was announced today by Executive Vice President and General Manager Sam Presti. Rajakovic has spent the past two seasons as the head coach of the Tulsa 66ers, the Thunder’s NBA D-League affiliate. “Darko’s diverse basketball background, knowledge of the game and ability to develop players at a high level were clearly apparent during his time in Tulsa, and I’m thrilled to have the opportunity to add him to our staff,” said Thunder Head Coach Scott Brooks. “His understanding of the core tenants of what we do, thanks to his time in Tulsa, will maintain a level of consistency that we value and his various head coaching experiences internationally will provide another layer to our coaches.” NBA.com

July 2, 2014 Updates
June 22, 2014 Updates

All three of those picks worked better than expected. Durant and Westbrook are perennial All-Stars, and Ibaka is one of the best defenders in the NBA. Presti was astute, but he admits luck played its part. “We’ll be the first to say that we’ve had a tremendous amount of good fortune. Nobody in our organization is taking credit for the development of Kevin Durant or Russell Westbrook,” said Presti, a Concord native and former Emerson College player. “Our focus was on building a team that was capable of sustainable competitive success. We felt like building through the draft and building an identity for a team over a period of years was the best approach for us. It’s really so much about the individual team and organization and how they see their envisioned future.” Boston Globe

June 16, 2014 Updates
June 6, 2014 Updates

In his first public comments since the conclusion of the Thunder’s season, Sam Presti on Thursday ended all speculation surrounding Scott Brooks. The general manager said the coach is coming back. “Scotty, I think, did an excellent job,” Presti said at his annual season-ending news conference. “I understand we all have a tendency to look at the last game or the last series. I respect that. That’s part of sports. I can’t do that. I’m looking at a body of work. I’m looking at an understanding of what drives our success and the way in which we’ve gotten to this point.” Oklahoman

The Thunder journeyed to the Western Conference Finals this year for the third time in four seasons and came two wins shy of reaching the NBA Finals. In the process, OKC won 59 games and captured its fourth straight Northwest Division championship. “We’ll never take for granted, in Oklahoma City, the opportunity to raise a banner in Chesapeake Arena, as we did with our fourth division title,” Presti said. “We won’t take for granted 59 wins. Those are things that we respect, we cherish and most importantly we understand will be hard to replicate.” Oklahoman

June 5, 2014 Updates

A few weeks ago it seemed unlikely that Porzingis would keep his name in the draft. The 18-year-old Latvian was projected as a potential top-10 pick next year. But sources now say Porzingis has received a promise from the Thunder to draft him in the first round. There's no way he'll be around at 29, so the Thunder's pick at No. 21 is the target. The question is whether that will be high enough to get him. Porzingis going in the late lottery to mid-first round is no longer a pipe dream for this skilled 7-footer with tremendous upside. ESPN.com

May 6, 2014 Updates
March 2, 2014 Updates
January 13, 2014 Updates
November 3, 2013 Updates
October 10, 2013 Updates

The Oklahoma City Thunder waived center Daniel Orton, it was announced today by Executive Vice President and General Manager Sam Presti. Orton appeared in 13 games with the Thunder during the 2012-13 season, averaging 2.5 points and 2.0 rebounds in 8.0 minutes per contest. NBA.com

September 26, 2013 Updates

“How do you think the team has gotten better this off-season?” It was an inquiry that dismissed any preconceived notions and disregarded all pessimism that had been built by a relatively stale summer. And it forced Presti to think, requiring the Thunder general manager depart briefly from his script and spell out how exactly this team could be better when its inactivity primarily suggests it's gotten worse. “Well,” Presti said, “I think it all comes down to how you define ‘better.'” And with that, Presti spent the better part of the next 30 minutes detailing his definition during his annual preseason news conference. Along the way, he expressed excitement and extreme confidence in his club, choosing to view widespread question marks not as concerns but as opportunities. “We're excited about the opportunity to build on the success and strengths of last season,” Presti said, “and we think we have an opportunity to do that.” Oklahoman

September 25, 2013 Updates
September 24, 2013 Updates

As excitement builds over Saturday's start to training camp, Westbrook is eagerly anticipating his long-awaited return from the knee injury that cut short his 2013 postseason. Westbrook has not yet been cleared to resume full basketball activities, and neither him nor team officials are providing a timetable for when that final obstacle will be overcome. “We expect him to take part in parts of camp and work his way through different parts until he's ultimately cleared for unrestricted activity,” Thunder general manager Sam Presti said. “But it's all going to be contingent upon how his body reacts to the additional load that he'll be carrying.” Oklahoman

September 1, 2013 Updates
August 13, 2013 Updates

The saying goes “One can judge a man by the company he keep.” That gem of a quote is credited to Euripides, 480 B.C. Yet, it could just as easily apply to Oklahoma City Thunder chairman Clay Bennett. Since bringing an NBA franchise to his home state, the Oklahoma City native has stayed pretty much in the shadows, letting general manager Sam Presti be the public face of the organization. However, the business mogul and civic leader gave Oklahomans a rare glimpse into his personal life when he was inducted into the Oklahoma Sports Hall of Fame. What stood out to them most about his induction was who he chose to present him. He went with NBA legend Bill Russell. Bennett didn’t choose the Hall of Fame center just to show off. He did it for the simplest of reasons. Russell is a friend. “I have had a very nice relationship with Bill,” Bennett said. “I thought it might be fun to bring him to Oklahoma. And let others hear and enjoy him as I have. He was very gracious to accept. I am honored he would be here.” Tahlequah Daily Press

July 31, 2013 Updates

The Oklahoma City Thunder has named Robert Pack and Mike Terpstra as assistant coaches, it was announced today by Executive Vice President and General Manager Sam Presti. They join Rex Kalamian, Mark Bryant and Brian Keefe on Head Coach Scott Brooks’ bench. “We’re excited to add Robert and Mike to our coaching staff for the upcoming season,” said Head Coach Scott Brooks. “These additions bring diverse backgrounds to our group that will help the further development of our players.” Pack joins the Thunder after spending the previous three seasons as an assistant coach with the Los Angeles Clippers where he served as the head coach for the Clippers’ entry in the 2012 NBA Summer League in Las Vegas. Prior to that, he spent one season on the New Orleans Hornets bench. NBA.com

July 24, 2013 Updates
July 18, 2013 Updates

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